Earlier this week, the Ottawa Senators announced Jason Spezza will be sidelined for six to eight weeks, with a torn knee ligament, ending his chances of earning a spot on Canada’s 2010 Olympic team.
Spezza, who attended Team Canada’s orientation camp back in August, was injured during the third period of a 3-2 loss in Toronto on Monday, damaging the medial collateral ligament in his right knee when he collided with Toronto Maple Leafs forward Lee Stempniak.
“I’m not doing too good,” he said following Tuesday’s practice. “I just felt something pop, kind of. I felt something and then I tried to get up and skate and I had no power.”
Spezza, who was struggling since the start of the season, seemed to be breaking out of his slump with goals in consecutive games, including Monday against the Leafs. He has only five goals and 19 points in 30 games this season.
The Senators will also be without winger Nick Foligno for at least two weeks as the third-year forward underwent arthroscopic surgery on Friday to repair a small tear of the meniscus in his right knee.
Foligno also tweaked the knee during Monday night’s costly 3-2 loss to the Maple Leafs in Toronto. It swelled up on the plane ride home and Senators doctors determined Wednesday that minor surgery would be needed to put the ailment to rest quickly.
The Senators are targeting the Dec. 23 game against the Penguins in Pittsburgh as a possible return date for goaltender Pascal Leclaire (fractured cheekbone) and enforcer Chris Neil (knee), but until then, they’ll need to rely on the kind of collective team effort they delivered against the Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday. Brian Elliott recorded his second shutout in four games in the 2-0 win.
Wednesday night, head coach Cory Clouston even used defenceman Chris Campoli on the wing on the team’s fourth line alongside Binghamton callup Josh Hennessy and Ryan Shannon.
Sean Donovan, the other Sen injured, skated yesterday for the first time since tearing the ACL in his right knee on Nov. 19 against the Penguins, but he is still a few weeks away from returning in action…
The Senators will play back-to-back games this weekend as they visit the New Jersey Devils tonight at Prudential Centre, before they receive the Minnesota Wild and Guillaume Latendresse tomorrow night at Scotia Bank Place. Both games start at 7PM.
About the Author: Working as a freelance sports writer and translator, Fred, 33, graduated from Laval University in Quebec City, earning a bachelor of translation in 2002. An avid fan of the Northeast division teams, he's also a long time fan of the Washington Capitals and the Montreal Canadiens. Fred also speaks fluently French and Spanish. http://twitter.com/FredPoulin98 www.traductions-quebec.com